A nail in the heart drives home a lesson on faith and prayer

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  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    July 27, 2013 5:39 p.m.

    The world's flimsiest argument is often used by people who say that God could not exist because God does not think the way that they think. Do they really think that a supreme being who can set planets into orbit and then populate those planets with spiritual offspring would ever have a "eureka" moment when He would say, "Why didn't I think of that?"

    God's purposes are profound. We are given exactly the experiences in life that we need to enable each of us to "get over ourselves".

    The article touched the heart strings of those who allowed the Spirit to teach them. Those who have not yet learned to hear and feel the Spirit's quiet voice have something wonderful to look forward to - when they are ready.

  • bricha lehi, ut
    July 27, 2013 5:10 p.m.

    You fail to see my point, if this were an article were the parents attributed their sons survival on the generosity of Zues, ridiculing them would not be appropriate, if they attributed it to Allah, Budda, the universe, or even on the skill of the doctor it is not our place to ridicule!! These people had a very traumatic experience let them believe what they may regardless of what you believe!

  • Demisana South Jordan, UT
    July 27, 2013 1:40 p.m.

    All the comments here from those who don't believe in God have a very different perspective from those who do believe in God. This life is but a blink in eternity. We can't see what happened before, nor do we see what happens after. We're here to learn, and everything that happens here in this life is given to us to help us learn. Some of those things will be extremely difficult to experience with that limited perspective. The point is not what happens, or whether the outcome is bad or good, but how we respond to it, and the kind of people we become as a result. In a hundred years, we'll all be dead, and all of this will be long in the past. If we really are eternal beings, as I believe, then the kind of people we became will be all that remains.

  • Say No to BO Mapleton, UT
    July 27, 2013 6:13 a.m.

    Would you believe that God generally doesn't "make" things happen? Nor does He go around tinkering in our lives. It's MY life, not HIS. I'm being judged by my actions.
    There are times when God intervenes, like when people pray.

  • ulvegaard Medical Lake, Washington
    July 27, 2013 1:07 a.m.

    It is good to hear stories like this.

    From what I have learned of prayer -- it is often an exercise in learning to better understand the will of God. I have ached and yearned and prayed for good outcomes. Some times those outcomes were not as I had prayed for. Yet, during the efforts, I came to understand more fully that the Lord was present and aware of my pain; as well as the needs of the person I was praying for. My prayers may not have changed the outcome, but they helped to change me. I have come to understand better that prayer is not futile, it is a blessing. I know that God hears and answers my prayers -- because the answer was not always what I wanted, does not mean there was no answer. To the contrary, I have learned through prayer to better understand the concepts of eternity and to focus more on that.

  • moniker lewinsky Taylorsville, UT
    July 26, 2013 11:44 p.m.

    Joe, it happens to me ALL. THE. TIME. I would love to take a day and read all those reader comnents that go into a black hole. I may be a bit snarky, but I think it's in an endearing way. I can't be the only one. Somebody should put together a website of denied comments. Lol.

  • Joe Bauman Salt Lake City, UT
    July 26, 2013 7:52 p.m.

    I attempted to file a comment critical of the Deseret News' journalistic judgement for turning a story about a simple accident into a faith-promoting homily. It was rejected on the ground that I indulged in "personal attack," yet no individual was attacked in my comment. I have posted both the comment and the rejection on Facebook, in hopes that a wider audience will see the paper's true tactics in what it calls "a civil dialogue among its readers." Now to see if the Deseret News has the courage to even post this.

  • moniker lewinsky Taylorsville, UT
    July 26, 2013 6:58 p.m.

    If it is not okay to ridicule a person for what they believe, then it should go to reason that it is unacceptable to ridicule them for what they choose not to believe. This was my point in my response to "universal truth".
    I am happy that the boy survived. But if you want to talk about humility (as universal truth did), then I believe it's not humble to assume that God (if you believe in God) decided to show mercy to somebody because of how special they are or their faith or the love shown to them by others. Such thinking is, in my opinion, prideful- the opposite of humble. Of course, I've also heard it said a time or two that if a person is not spared, it is because were so special that God needed them on the other side. I'm no expert on faith. But it seems that the explanation is being tailored to fit the scenario.
    In any case, losing a child is the worst thing that can happen to somebody. Ask anybody whose child is not spared.

  • juliek Mapleton, UT
    July 26, 2013 6:27 p.m.

    I'm surprised...no, actually shocked by the comments posted about this story. Regardless of what you believe, this is an amazing story. I, for one, am so glad that he is ok. I can see the love this family has for each other. Maybe a kind word and empathy for what this family has gone through would be more appropriate for such a story. Hopefully none of us will have to experience something like this. It's always easy to judge others when we are not in their position. I wish health and happiness for this family :)

  • bricha lehi, ut
    July 26, 2013 6:23 p.m.

    What I don't understand is all the hate on this column. If you don't believe in God who cares that these parents attribute the survival, and well being of their son on divine intervention. Them believing that does not hurt you, or infringe on you in any way! Can't we all just be happy that the boy is ok? Or is it necessary to ridicule what others sincerely believe?

  • moniker lewinsky Taylorsville, UT
    July 26, 2013 5:59 p.m.

    Universal Truth: (no irony in that moniker)
    I don't think you have the right to judge your brother, nor do you have the right to judge early members of "the church" with whom you have never even spoken. I understand that when one attends church, they are given generalized, "universal truth" explanations for why a person might leave. There are typically about three of them: Apathy. Sin. Misunderstanding. Nevertheless, there are likely stories you haven't heard and things you haven't considered. Even if you are a very smart person. People get through things differently and you simply don't know enough to adequately judge a person's heart or their decisions. I would suggest that you spend less time trying to make assumptions about people who have come to different conclusions about life and more time trying to help your brother, in a nonjudgmental way, overcome his problems. Not necessarily what you perceive to be "spiritual" problems. There might be other ways you can help that don't involve judgment or a lecture. Maybe what he needs is different from what you need. Maybe for him, peace will come in a different package.

  • moniker lewinsky Taylorsville, UT
    July 26, 2013 5:49 p.m.

    Are people to whom bad things happen unimportant? Are people who aren't spared less loved? I'm happy that all turned out well, but we should remember not to insult people who have to go through horrible, merciless, brutal trials in life.
    I'm an atheist. Based on the year I've had, if I weren't an atheist, I'd conclude that God hates me. I'd rather be an atheist, frankly.

  • gegg OREM, UT
    July 26, 2013 5:43 p.m.

    Theistic folks in general believe god is an all-knowing being; he already knows precisely what is going to happen to each of us in every instant. And yet, these same people pray to god believing that if they have sufficient faith, they can change his all-knowing mind, and the more friends they can recruit to offer up additional prayers, the better their chances. It seems so clearly contradictory, I think I must somehow misunderstand the whole idea. I suspect Abe survived because his father and others had sufficient medical training to know to do the right things to optimize Abe's odds of survival. It's difficult to envision a god who would have let Abe die because he was one prayer short, especially since he supposedly knew the outcome from the beginning. And as Hutterite points out, why would any intervention capable of preventing his death from the accident not prevent the accident itself?

  • gegg OREM, UT
    July 26, 2013 5:07 p.m.

    It's the latest fashion around here to throw out the term "tender mercies" when what is really meant is "coincidences". I'm frankly quite surprised no one has used it yet in response to this story. Oh well, the day's not over.

  • Brahmabull sandy, ut
    July 26, 2013 3:53 p.m.

    Say No to BO

    that in no way answers the questions I asked you. Essentially you are saying that what would happen would happen anyway, but pray to help what was already going to happen anyway to still happen. Does that kind of logic make any sense?

  • Say No to BO Mapleton, UT
    July 26, 2013 2:13 p.m.

    Prayer brings the will of God in alignment with the will of the supplicant.
    Those who prayed for the boy were obviously sincere. Most of our prayers are not.
    C S Lewis wrote an interesting essay on Petitionary Prayer, revealing his ignorance in the matter. There's a fair amount of misunderstanding all around when it comes to placing orders with God.

  • RedUtes08 West Jordan, UT
    July 26, 2013 1:49 p.m.


    I believe that is something our mortal minds cannot connect with and understand. I believe prayer is a way to show our faith and belief that God can perform miracles in our life. "For if there be no faith among the children of men, God can do no miracle among them;"

  • Idaho_Boy Aberdeen, ID
    July 26, 2013 1:26 p.m.

    I am not sure that the outcome was changed because of the prayers that were offered. However I do believe that the comfort and the peace that they received was because of the prayers. Prayer is an act of aligning our will to God's will not the other way around.

  • Brahmabull sandy, ut
    July 26, 2013 1:08 p.m.

    Say No to BO

    So do you really believe that god wouldn't have blessed him if people wouldn't have prayed for him?? That makes little sense. Why would god make the fate of ones life rest in the hands of other people? Surely people have survived horrific things without prayer, and people who have been prayed upon die. So what do the prayers actually do? I have a hard time believing that god would let somebody suffer more for not praying, or make them suffer less just because they prayed.

  • Universal Truth Salt Lake City, UT
    July 26, 2013 9:50 a.m.

    I have been through some extraordinarily trying circumstances, some based on my own deficiencies. I have a brother for whom one could say the same thing. We have chosen to respond differently; I have viewed my trials as a wakeup call; he has given up. Tellingly, he has not been content to let things go, but instead has taken every opportunity to prove that what he once believed was instead untrue. It is a pattern we have seen with early members of the Church that turned their backs on it, and it is a pattern that we continue to see today through various media. This should be a big red flag, but the ability to see it requires humility. And of course, if humility were there in the first place, my brother and others like him would have allowed themselves to see the positive along with the negative. In so doing, they would instead have been able to continue to grow "line upon line, precept upon precept" until their experiences had become sufficient to change faith into knowledge.

  • FrankSegesman ,
    July 26, 2013 9:11 a.m.

    "He heared the lawn mower give a soft purr that grew to a mild roar."

    He heared it....

    Only in Utah.

  • Say No to BO Mapleton, UT
    July 26, 2013 7:01 a.m.

    @ Hutt
    Ah, the problem of evil. We've seen in the last week two different outcomes for two different missionaries. We cannot know why in this life, only speculate.
    In the mix are intangibles like faith, prayer, agency (of the victim and those around him), the will of God.
    Greater thinkers than you and I have grappled with this issue since humans first walked the earth.
    For myself, I am convinced that God doesn't run the lawnmowers for us, nor does He sweep for nails. But I believe he does answer prayers. The boy had excellent medical care from the moment it happened.
    He was lucky/blessed/fortunate.
    I'll meet you on the other side to talk about it.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    July 26, 2013 6:58 a.m.

    Re: "I don't permit myself to claim what I cannot know."

    Neither does the Tullis family.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    July 25, 2013 11:09 p.m.

    Faith? Prayer? Skill? Luck? Fate? This situation could validate any of them, and more. I do not claim to know by what means this lad survived his ordeal. I don't permit myself to claim what I cannot know. But I do ask why any intervention capable of preventing his death from the accident didn't prevent the accident itself.